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Child, sexual abuse prevention efforts eyed in Madison County

ROGER SEIBERT, Staff writer
Posted 4/7/17

WAMPSVILLE — Madison County’s Board of Supervisors is considering a resolution proclaiming their recognition of April as National Child Abuse Prevention and Sexual Assault Awareness Month.The …

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Child, sexual abuse prevention efforts eyed in Madison County

Posted

WAMPSVILLE — Madison County’s Board of Supervisors is considering a resolution proclaiming their recognition of April as National Child Abuse Prevention and Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

The board will vote on the resolution, which officials say will recognize the work done by county agencies to prevent child and sexual abuse as well as those agencies and workers that aid in the recovery of victims of such crimes. A vote on the measure is expected during their meeting this coming Tuesday, officials said.

The lawmakers hope that by bringing attention to the issues of child abuse and sexual assault they can help to reduce the cycle of abuse and promote healing for victims.

More than 1,600 reports in county

An estimated 679,000 children nationwide are abused or neglected each year.

In 2016 Madison County’s Children’s Services received 1,634 reports of child abuse and maltreatment. The Children’s Advocacy Center investigated 230 of the most serious physical and sexual abuse cases. These investigations led to 41 arrests.

Statistics cited by the county state that one in six women and one in 33 men will be raped, sexually assaulted or sexually harassed at some point in their lifetime; an estimated 300 cases of sexual abuse occur each year in Madison County.

“We must work together to educate our community about child abuse and sexual violence prevention, support survivors, and speak out against harmful attitudes and actions,” Stockbridge Town Supervisor and county Health and Human Services Chairman Alexander R. Stepanski said.

Child abuse may be reported at 800-342-3720.

Numerous agencies tackle issue

Madison County has several agencies that work towards educating, advocating and healing victims of abuse and neglect.

The Madison County Department of Social Services provides assistance programs aiong with adult and family program and child support to those in need. They may be contacted at 315-366-2211.

The Madison County Child Advocacy Center combines services to reduce the movement of children from one agency to another.

Their stated goal is to lessen the trauma, and shame, of child abuse by reducing the amount of interviews. They may be contacted at 315-363-2816.

Free, confidential services available

Liberty Resources Help Restore Hope Center, 218 Liberty St., Oneida, provides free and confidential services to those affected by sexual assault, domestic violence or other violent crimes in Madison and Chenango counties and surrounding communities.

Services are available to all victims and their family, regardless of when the abuse or crime occurred or whether they choose to report it to the police. Their number is 315-363-0048, and their 24-hour emergency number is 855-966-9723.

“It is time for all of us to start conversations, take appropriate action and support one another to create a safer environment for all,” Nelson Town Supervisor and Criminal Justice, Public safety and Emergency Communications Chairman Roger D. Bradstreet said.

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